May 26, 2015

Serving Two Masters | Library by Design, Spring 2015

A NATURAL PARTNERSHIP The Tidewater Community College/City of Virginia Beach Joint-Use Library balances unique design against the retention ponds created to absorb rainwater. Photo ©Jeff Goldberg/Esto

Joint-use libraries, especially partnerships between public libraries and colleges, are rare but not unheard of. In an era of belt-tightening, pooling resources with a partner that shares many of your institution’s goals can be a tempting proposition for schools and cities alike. It’s complex, but as seen at the Tidewater Community College/City of ­Virginia Beach Joint-Use Library, opened in 2013, it can also be extremely rewarding.

Design Institute Boston Design Challenges | Library by Design, Spring 2015

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Design challenges from the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library, the Kingston Public Library, The Newburgh Free Library, The Springfield City Library, and Towson University.

Design for People | Library by Design Spring 2015

1. The Main Library’s Guastavino Room was an impressive backdrop to registration
and lunch. 2. Attendees tossed around ideas during the Gloucester Lyceum/Sawyer
Free Library’s challenge session. 3. The Open Forum allowed for suggestions from
participating architects (l.–r.) Aimee G. Lombardo (LLB Architects), Peter Gisolfi
(Gisolfi Associates), Peter Bolek (HBM Architects), and Matthew Oudens (Oudens Ello
Architecture). 4. The challenge session for Maryland’s Towson University brought
about solid strategies. 5. The session on creative and inspirational spaces featured
experts (l.–r.) Conrad Ello (Oudens Ello Architecture), Michael Colford (director of
library services at Boston PL), moderator Emily Puckett Rodgers (School of Information,
University of Michigan), and Jeff Hoover (Tappé Architects). Photos by Kevin Henegan

Before Boston saw its first snowstorm of what would prove to be a very long winter, an enthusiastic group of architects, designers, vendors, and librarians convened at Boston Public Library’s (BPL) Central Library in Copley Square for LJ’s December 2014 Design Institute (DI). The first question of the event, posed by Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners library building consultant Lauren Stara, set the stage: “The shift to digital and changing user expectations means that even buildings only ten or 20 years old may already be out-of-date…. How do we build for an ever-changing ­environment?”

What’s Hot | Library by Design, Fall 2014

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New and popular products to finish off your library design in function and style. Includes archival supplies, carts, playful and interactive children’s displays, circulation stations, desks, displays, printers and scanners, seating, security, self-service, shelving, storage, and tables.

Blue-Ribbon Libraries | Library by Design

Top row: Midland Centennial Library, TX; Central Library, Bottom row, l.-r.: St. Louis Public Library, Glenmore Christian Academy Elemantray Library, Calgary Alta. Midland photo by Maxwell Filmworks; St. Louis photo  ©Timothy Hursley; Glenmore photo by Dawn Stringer, On A Wire Photography & Design

The Library Leadership and Management Association (LLAMA) , a division of the American Library Association (ALA), and the International Interior Design Association (IIDA) honored the winners of the 2014 Library Interior Design Awards at ALA’s annual conference held in Las Vegas in June. Over 200 entries were reviewed, and many of this year’s 19 winners have a vibrant and functional design that takes into consideration that libraries are more than ever a gathering space for their community.

The Library of the Century | Design4Impact

HIGH TECH Computer training lab (l.) and children’s Promethean ActivTable (r.) at Pikes Peak

Library 21c, the Pikes Peak Library District’s (PPLD) latest addition, is a centralized education and experimentation hub. The new two-story Colorado Springs library is the biggest building in the district, the second-largest in Colorado, supporting about 620,000 residents. Last year, the district had 3.6 million ­visitors. What makes this new library unique is the wide variety of opportunities under the same roof.

UpClose: Opening the Barn Door | Library by Design

UNLOCKING THE BARN DOOR (Clockwise, top l.) The café, study space, and exterior of England’s Cumbria barn blend traditional features with modern functionality

Two historical barns are transformed into modern libraries. One barn sits in Cumbria, England, a county once host to William Wordsworth, Beatrix Potter, and Arthur Ransome. Surrounded by the mountainous landscape of the UK’s largest national park, the traditional Cumbrian stone barn was constructed in Ambleside in 1929 by Charlotte Mason College.

A Local Library | Library by Design

TRADITION UPDATED The Gullah Geechee heritage collection (above) is encircled by woven wood. The columns outside the entryway (r.) evoke the island’s oak trees. The library’s design (inset) combines modern technology with natural materials

To walk into the St. Helena Public Library, SC, is to become immersed in contradiction. On the one hand, it’s modern—a 21st-century library guided by a Maker space philosophy, complete with 3-D printers, an animator, recording studio, littleBits and Makey Makey kits, and more state-of-the-art technology. Seamlessly coexisting with this sleek newness is a down-home Southern warmth and natural, earthy simplicity, with architectural details that embrace links to a unique culture with connections to West Africa.

Crossroads of Design | Library by Design

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In a time when the mission of libraries is rapidly evolving, how can we craft buildings that not only endure but thrive when meeting new challenges? This question underlined the learning at LJ’s Design Institute (DI) held May 16 in Salt Lake City. Presenters and peers asked attendees to redefine how they thought about sustainability, exploring the idea in terms of conserving energy and being environmentally responsible and looking at the sustainability of a building holistically—from how comfortable patrons and employees are to how the space can change to support new ventures, some of which designers and librarians might not have imagined yet.

Design Institute Design Challenges, Fall 2014 | Library by Design

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At LJ’s Design Institute: Salt Lake City, attendees in interactive brainstorming breakout sessions addressed design challenges posed by real life libraries in Texas, Washington, Idaho, Utah, and Arizona.